Item 1106 - Nelson Mandela address to ANC Rally, 2 August 2008

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ZA COM MR-S-1106


Nelson Mandela address to ANC Rally, 2 August 2008


  • 2008-08-02 (Creation)

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Transcription of speech made by Mr Mandela

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(18 July 1918-5 December 2013)

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Migrated from the Nelson Mandela Speeches Database (Sep-2018).

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ANC Rally to celebrate Mandela's 90th Birthday

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  • English

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President of the African National Congress, Comrade Jacob Zuma

President of the Republic of South Africa, Comrade Thabo Mbeki

Leadership of the ANC and of Government

Members, Comrades, Compatriots, Friends

I thank the ANC for organising this rally to celebrate our 90th birthday.

I would be nothing without the ANC. The struggle had been my life and the ANC led that struggle.

I thank the ANC for having given meaning to my 90 years on this planet, in this country we all love so dearly.

And I ask you today: do not celebrate an individual. Celebrate the achievements and reaffirm the values of a great organisation, one that has led for almost a hundred years.

Celebrate and reaffirm the principle of collective leadership and inclusiveness. Let no individual, section, faction or group ever regard itself as greater than the organisation and the common good of all our people.

Celebrate the promotion of unity - within the organisation, amongst our allies, in the nation at large and amongst all our people. Our nation comes from a history of deep division and strife; let us never through our deeds or words take our people back down that road.

Celebrate our tradition of open debate, criticism, discussion and respect for democracy. We fought hard and sacrificed much for this democracy. Protect, defend, consolidate and advance democracy – within the organisation and in national life. Let us give the lead in demonstrating our respect for the institutions of our democracy - both in our actions and words.

Celebrate and reaffirm our fundamental commitment to creating a better life for all, particularly the poor and marginalised. Poverty and deprivation in our midst demean all of us. Let us mobilise in one great co-operative national effort the enormous energy of our society in order to overcome and eliminate poverty. We came together as a nation to end the scourge of apartheid. Today we are challenged to end poverty and all its attendant suffering.

Celebrate the nobility of our ideals of creating a non-racial and non-sexist society. Let us redouble our efforts to fully realise the ideal of a democratic state and society that secures to all their birthright without distinction of colour, race, sex or belief. Let us live that non-racialism and non-sexism in our every day, deed and word.

You are the inheritors of a great organisation, one that has led for almost a century. It is now in your hands to uphold the best and the noblest of that history.

Now - as much as ever in our history - we require disciplined leaders and members with respect for their organisation, who care equally for all South Africans and for all people who live within our borders. Let there be peace and friendship.

I wish you well. I thank you once more.

Nkosi Sikilel’ iAfrika.

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Acquisition method: From hard drive ; Source: Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessioned on 30/11/10 by Razia Saleh




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